Information & Advice
India is one of the most diverse and beautiful countries on the planet, so if you're planning to travel to India you're bound to be looking forward to your trip.
Staying safe abroad is important, and ensuring you're vaccinated against diseases you may be at risk of contracting is one important step towards helping you stay safe. After all, India is home to some diseases which you may be exposed to and which we don't have in the UK.
Vaccinations help protect against these diseases and you can be vaccinated at participating Boots pharmacies. We'll be able to advise you about the diseases you may encounter and steps you can take to help keep yourself safe while you're travelling to India.
Below are some of the diseases you may need protection against when you're in India.
There is a risk of malaria in some areas for all travellers to India. Certain travellers are at an increased risk in other areas of India which includes those who are pregnant, long stay travellers, the elderly and those with certain medical conditions. For other parts of India including Goa, bite avoidance measures are recommended. Our pharmacists will help you work out if you need anti-malaria tablets and which ones are suitable for you.
Malaria is a blood infection which can be fatal. It's transmitted by mosquitoes, so it's best to avoid being bitten by taking steps like using insect repellent.
Yellow fever is a viral infection transmitted by mosquitoes and can be fatal in some people.
There is no risk of yellow fever in India, but you will need a certificate proving you have been vaccinated against it if you arrive within six days of leaving a country which does carry a transmission risk for yellow fever. Your pharmacist will give you the latest advice for your trip.
Rabies is a serious viral infection which affects the nervous system and is almost always fatal unless treated early.
It's passed onto humans when broken skin comes into contact with the saliva of an infected domestic or wild animal. The most commonly infected animals are dogs. Bats may also carry the virus in India. You are at higher risk in remote areas where access to medical care may be limited.
Typhoid is a bacterial infection spread through poor sanitation. Symptoms include stomach cramps and diarrhoea. Those at increased risk are travellers visiting friends and relatives. All travellers are advised to maintain good personal, food and water hygiene measures.
Hepatitis A is a viral liver infection caught from contaminated food and water. The risk is higher in areas with poor sanitation, so taking steps like washing your hands after using the toilet is important.
Hepatitis B is a viral liver disease spread through infected blood and other bodily fluids. The risk is higher for certain people, like those having unprotected sex.
Cholera is a bacterial infection which can cause watery diarrhoea. It is transmitted through eating contaminated food and drinking contaminated water. Travellers are advised to maintain good personal, food and water hygiene measures.
This brain infection is spread by mosquitoes and symptoms include paralysis and seizures.
There is a risk in a number of states in India and transmission seasons vary depending on your location and when you are going. Your pharmacist will be able to give you up-to-date information about activities that increase your risk.
A persistent cough is typical of tuberculosis (TB), which is spread in a similar way to colds and flu.
Travellers in India area advised to avoid close contact with those suffering with infectious pulmonary TB.
Contaminated food and water can spread polio, so travellers in India are advised to take extra care with personal, food and water hygiene. A booster dose may be recommended if you've not had a polio dose in the last 10 years.
Tetanus is an infection caused by bacteria and can lead to the tightening of muscles in the body which can affect swallowing and breathing. If you've not had a tetanus dose in the last 10 years then a booster dose may be advised.
Getting vaccinated can help prevent you from becoming ill if you are exposed to these diseases. Our pharmacists will help you understand the factors that increase your risk and can help you work out which vaccinations to get depending on things like:
You can use our quick check tool to get a list of diseases that may be present in the country and vaccinations to consider for your destination.
We recommend booking an appointment with a Boots pharmacist six to eight weeks before you travel. However, even if time is short, we can still help you with options to consider.
No matter where you are travelling to, it's recommended your childhood immunisations are up to date for:
Vaccinations for the following conditions are usually available free on the NHS:
These vaccinations protect against diseases which are considered to be the greatest risk to public health if they were brought into the country.
For more information on common travel immunisations, why not visit BootsWebMD?
From insect repellent to sunscreen, our travel checklist will help you pack for your trip.
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